Skip to main content

Reply to this post | Go Back
View Post [edit]

Poster: Blade_Runner Date: Feb 9, 2012 2:44pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Have Silent Cleopatra on film

I obtained a 16mm copy of Cleopatra, not the one starring Liz Taylor or the one starring Claudette Colbert, but a far earlier version starring a very strange looking actress named Theda Bara. Interesting film, some very odd scenes and costumes.

How do I transfer this movie from film to digital?

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: Mr Cranky Date: Feb 12, 2012 2:36pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: Have Silent Cleopatra on film

A good source for a free or inexpensive media transfers is the local library, high school or vocational center. Our school has a classroom with equipment set up for it. The historical society I volunteer for also has the equipment to do such transfers. Your town may have people or hobbyist who would be glad to do the transfer.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: Hg80 Date: Feb 10, 2012 11:00am
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: Have Silent Cleopatra on film

I seriously doubt that the 16mm print described is the complete Theda Bera "Cleopatra" [1917]. Historically, only a few seconds of the film are extant. Nevertheless, could you answer the following...

1.) Have you projected the print?

2.) How long did the film run?

3.) How is the film spooled...like the reel footage capacity [100' to 2,000'] and number of reels [plastic or metal]?

4.) Is the storage container a box or a metal can?

5.) Have you physically inspected the film checking the condition such as projector wear [emulsion scratches, splices, clean-looking perforations], single or double perforation, an optical or magnetic sound track, is the film stock black and white or color, and are there any numerical notations indicating film stock and manufacturer?

This film could be a documentary.


This post was modified by Hg80 on 2012-02-10 19:00:53

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: Blade_Runner Date: Feb 11, 2012 12:32am
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: Have Silent Cleopatra on film

It ran for about an hour. There seems to be jumps suggesting that part are missing, as the plot is there but seems to be a little incoherent, though possibly this is how it was meant to be seen. As I said this film looks very old and there seems to be a lot of print damage.

I ran it on a Item Bell Howell 16mm Projector

It came in 5 reels (metal).

No Sound track
Storage container was a box.

This post was modified by Blade_Runner on 2012-02-11 08:31:02

This post was modified by Blade_Runner on 2012-02-11 08:32:00

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: Hg80 Date: Feb 11, 2012 5:18am
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: Have Silent Cleopatra on film

Well, some questions still need to be answered.

I can only guess that the reels are 400' each, thus giving a projection time [for about 2,000' of film] about one hour [as you indicated]. I don't believe that anyone has established the actual screen time for "Cleopatra".

Even though 16mm has been around since the early twenties, it was considered a medium for amateur/educational/home usage and several theatrical films were transferred to 16mm...usually in a condensed format [Blackhawk, Castle, Official, etc.]. Since you indicated that the film cans were stored in boxes, this suggests a commercial marketing method. Moreover, those old home movie projectors usually projected a maximum of 400' reels. This would make sense for whatever you have.

You didn't mention "title" information.

Did you see any reel change cue marks at the end of each reel?

And, inspect the film looking for film stock numbers and film manufacture.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: Video-Cellar Date: Feb 11, 2012 1:28pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: Have Silent Cleopatra on film

The easiest and cheapest way to transfer a film to video is to project the film and use a digital video camera to film the projected image from the screen. The results will not be anywhere near as effective as a telecine transfer but if you use a HD digital camera you should be able to match the film frame rate to the video frame rate which will limit most of the usual problems that come from using this method. The most important part is making sure the projector and camera remain in focus.

You might also find small professional operations around that transfer old home movies. Most of these will use a basic type of telecine and can be very cost effective. Professional film transfer with frame by frame digital scanning is very expensive.

This could be a great find. There is often confusion about which film is which with the early Cleopatras. Some films are often mislabelled. Which film does it most look like?

Silent Cleopatra No 1

or

Silent Cleopatra No 2

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: bearcor Date: Feb 9, 2012 11:36pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: Have Silent Cleopatra on film

wOw, Only two of her films are supposed to survive intact including her first,A Fool There Was from (1914) So if you have the other one it is indeed a find, and yes we would love to see it

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: guyzilla Date: Feb 10, 2012 2:12am
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: Have Silent Cleopatra on film

Yeah, put it up here and make this rare gem a little less rare. Sounds like you've really got something.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: bearcor Date: Feb 10, 2012 2:42am
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: Have Silent Cleopatra on film

you missed a key point, He has it on 16MM, and needs help getting his film print converted to digital before he can upload it.

I only know commercial places that aren't cheap. Maybe someone with access to a college lab could help.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: guyzilla Date: Feb 10, 2012 8:46pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: Have Silent Cleopatra on film

I know it ain't cheap, but I know if I had something like this in my possession, I would definitely make it one of my goals to put it on disc. I'm not trying to rush anyone.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: cosmico Date: Feb 10, 2012 9:33pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: Have Silent Cleopatra on film

Transferring film to video *properly* is very expensive.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: guyzilla Date: Feb 11, 2012 9:37pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: Have Silent Cleopatra on film

I'm sure it is. When my mom passed away, my sister found a whole bunch of 8mm films in the attic. Sis said she intended to transfer as much as she could to disc. But, yeah, it's expensive, and she's busy, so we may not see this plan bear fruit for a number of years yet.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: NDArch Date: Feb 12, 2012 12:41pm
Forum: feature_films Subject: Re: Have Silent Cleopatra on film

If true that this is with Ms Bara, I would gladly contribute a bit to transfer of the film (with, of course, a copy for myself).